Self Love In The Time Of Social Distancing

Hello!

The last few weeks have been nothing less than a nightmare for all the people across the world. With the outbreak of Coronavirus, stress and anxiety levels are at a peak. In a grave situation like this, we have to act responsibly and stay indoors as much as we can. Not just for our own health, but also for the sake of our families and the rest of society.

With the steady rise in the numbers in India, social distancing looks like the best solution to curb the spread of this pandemic until it is too late. It is a now or never situation.

With the majority of us staying indoors, we suddenly have a lot of time in our hands. Our otherwise packed schedules have suddenly vanished into thin air, leaving us with empty spaces to fill in. Being at home all day, we resort to scrolling down our social media feeds to stay updated about the latest news. With any new piece of information, our fear and stress only increase. Day in and day out, we spend time mindlessly looking at our Twitter feed or Instagram, losing out on so much precious time we could spend on doing something productive, fun and relaxing.

Looking at the brighter side, why not take these periods of isolation as a way to give ourselves some much-needed attention and love? In this blog post, I want to share a few ways you can spend your time at home.

1. Read books: Of course, this had to be the first in this list! 😛 Don’t we all have a pile of books we would “want to read” but we simply do not find the time to? Now is the time to dive in and get out all those books collecting dust. Indulge in reading books which you love, even if it is comics. And you can always find ebooks to read on Kindle (for those who do not own a Kindle, you can even download the Kindle app on your phones and tabs). For book recommendations, you can visit my Goodreads profile.
2. Binge-watch TV shows: We have been offered a “Netflix and Chill” time on a platter, so why not go at it? 😄 Watching (and re-watching) your favourite TV series online can be a real stress-buster and help in passing time. While at it, find good movies on Hotstar/Amazon Prime Video/Netflix. You’ll be surprised at the options thrown at you.
3. Clear out your wardrobe and study area: This is a classic. Being master procrastinators that we are, we only keep putting off cleaning our overflowing pile of clothes. Always excusing ourselves that we “do not have enough time” and letting the pile grow. Take this opportunity to organise your cupboard and books. Put on a good playlist (you’ll find great ones on Spotify. Here’s the Android version and iOS version) and clean away! You’ll be surprised at how time flies (especially if you’ve a great playlist on!). By the end of it, you’ll find yourselves sighing a loud, satisfying sigh and staring at the super clean and organised cupboard of yours! 🙂
4. Take an online class: We are blessed to be in an era of online learning. Make the best use of it. Find a course you always wanted to do. Photography? Sketching? Writing? There are so many courses out there! Skillshare is a great online-learning community where you can find TONS of interesting classes. You get a one-month of free membership and access to all premium classes, which is great. There are so many classes, you’ll be spell-bound. Of course, for those who want to find a free alternative, there is always our saviour, YouTube! You can find good videos to educate yourself on varied topics of interest, all for free.
5. Learn cooking!: Always wanted to make a meal from scratch? Now is the time to learn to cook! Learn to make a basic dish or two, something which you can whip up quickly. You can spend an hour easily on this, and you will (hopefully) end up with a delicious plate of food at the end. You’ll become self-sufficient as well. A win-win scenario. Lookup for YouTube videos and recipes on Pinterest. You’ll not be disappointed. And if you are at home with your mom, she is your best teacher. Ask her to teach you to cook your favourite dish and she will be the happiest. 🙂
6. Workout at home: So what if you cannot go to the gym or for a walk outdoors? You can still exercise at home. There’s Yoga, there’s the 7-minute workout. Browse through YouTube or Pinterest for simple and quick at-home workouts and you’ll be spoilt for choice. Keep your body moving and sweat it out. Nothing better than that!
7. Journal: I’ve always been a propagator of journalling and have written a blog post about it too. You can read it here: Journaling for the Soul. I’m pretty sure that we all have an empty notebook lying around our house (or if not, you surely have a note-taking app on your phone). Start putting down your thoughts. Write all that’s on your mind, without restricting yourself. This is essential particularly at this time where we are all a bundle of nerves and worrying about the pandemic. Just let it all go and journal out your feelings and thoughts. You may feel strange initially and may even restrict writing what’s actually on your mind. This is perfectly okay. With time, you’ll ease into it. Trust me when I say this, once you get the hang out of it, you will not want to stop journaling. Yours truly has been journaling for more than 8 years now and I cannot ever stop this habit.
8. Spend time with family: Goes without saying, now that you’re all indoors, spend time with your family. Eat your meals together, watch movies together. It’s a lovely feeling.
9. Spend time with YOURSELF: Now is the time to give time for yourself. I’ve again written a blog post about this which you can read here: Know Thyself. Just sit still for a while, listen to yourself, zone out for a while. Get to know yourself better.
10. Watch the sunset: If you’re one of those lucky people who can see the sunset from your balcony, do it now. It’s a beautiful experience. Just sit and gaze at the sky, the colours and the sun slowly setting. It’s meditative and calms you down.

I was greeted with this lovely view a few days ago right from the terrace of my house. Breath-taking!

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11. Rekindle your old hobbies: We’ve all had a multitude of hobbies when we were in school. Once we grew up, we lost touch with it all. Now is the time to say hello to these long-lost friends of yours. Indulge in whatever hobbies which make you happy and tap into your creativity. Relive your childhood days, once again! 🙂
12. Call old friends: So you cannot go out and meet your friends. Dejected? Again, make use of the blessing called technology. Video-call your friends who live in other cities, ask about their well-being and spend time catching up.

A bonus tip: Catch up on missed out blog posts on The Soulful Nib. Hahahaha! There are close to 90 blog posts to date. So if you’ve missed out on a few of them, please do read. 😁

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These are trying times for all of us. A battle. Let us all do our best in helping the nation to fight the virus. We’re in this together.

Until next time, stay blessed (and stay healthy)!

P.S. Wash your hands.

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